Fans slam new UFC Venum apparel deal as pay structure is revealed

‘The UFC and Dana White will keep getting away with robbery’: Fans slam new Venum apparel deal as pay structure is revealed with fighters earning ‘f****** peanuts’

  • The UFC and Dana White have come under fire for the new Venum apparel deal 
  • Fighters will only earn a small amount more per fight under the new agreement 
  • Athletes will continue to be limited with what they can wear during a fight week

UFC have recently began their new exclusive global outfitting and apparel partnership with Venum, who recently took over Reebok in producing performance fight gear.

UFC 260 marked the organisation’s last event with their outfitting policy with Reebok and the new deal with Venum will debut at UFC Fight Night on April 10, with designs to be released shortly.

With Venum’s introduction into the sport, fighters will expect a boost to their purses – but fans do not seem impressed by the small amount more that fighters will be able to earn and have called out UFC president Dana White.

The UFC and Dana White have been critisiced for pay bands under the UFC’s new apparel deal

UFC 260 marked their last event under Reebok after striking a new deal with Venum 

Champions across all divisions will now get £30,300 per bout in fight week incentive pay, compared to £28,900 with Reebok. 

Title challengers will get £23,100, compared to the old rate of £21,600. Fighters with 21 or more UFC fights get £15,100, up from £14,400. 

Athletes with between 16 and 20 fights will also see an increase, from £10,800 to £11,500. 

Entry-level fighters with between one and three UFC fights will now get £2,800 compared with £2,500 previously. 

Athletes with four or five UFC fights also get a bump, from £2,800 to £3,250. 

Athletes who have six to 10 UFC fights will go from £3,600 to £4,300; and fighters with between 11 and 15 fights get £7,950, compared with £7,200 under Reebok. 

The UFC first struck a deal with Reebok in 2014, limiting the clothing athletes could wear

‘This is not a profit center for us,’ UFC senior executive vice president Lawrence Epstein explained to ESPN. 

‘Whether it’s cash out the door or where it’s product, we’re delivering it to the athletes. All the value is essentially going to them. 

‘We’re not really making anything on this. We do feel the look and feel of the product itself is great for the UFC brand, but when it comes to cash it’s all going to the athletes, whether in actual cash or product.’ 

Ever since the UFC signed a deal back in 2014 with Reebok, fighters have been subject to follow an outfitting policy, promotional duties and code of conduct for a per-fight bonus in line with the apparel agreement.

However, some fighters could continue to miss out on up to six-figure payouts per bout as they can not wear logos or clothes from their own sponsors – a controversial rule that was introduced with the Reebok deal.

Epstein said that fighters are ‘free to enter into any sponsorship for non-fight-week related stuff.’ 

One fan reacted to the news, tweeting: ‘Venum deal is barely different than the Reebok one. 

‘Basing a fighter’s cut of apparel deal off UFC tenure as opposed to popularity metrics = a genius way to suppress wages & incentivize cutting vets. Until these fighters unionize, Dana & UFC will keep getting away with robbery.’

Another fan was outraged at the pay bump, complaining: ‘F***** peanuts. UFC reveals new pay tiers for fighters under Venum partnership after Reebok era comes to an end.’

Another sarcastically tweeted: ‘Lol that new Venum contract really though they did something with that extra 1/2 thousand bucks’ 

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